How to Use Apple Music on the iPad

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How to Turn On Apple Music on the iPad

In order to join Apple Music, you will first need to update your iPad to iOS 8.0.4.  You can do this in the iPad's Settings by going to General settings and choosing Software Update.  (Get more detailed instructions on upgrading your iPad.)  After the update is complete, you will be asked to join Apple Music the first time you launch the Music app.  

For some of us, that will be a no-brainer.  Apple offers a 3-month free trial, and it's easy to say "Yes!" to free music.   For others, it is a more difficult decision.  Free trials work so well because even if we don't use the service, we often forget to cancel it until we are actually billed.  

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And once you bypass that initial sign up page, you won't be prompted again.  So how do you sign up for Apple Music?

In the upper-left corner of Apple's redesigned Music app is a button shaped like a small head with a circle around it.   Tap this button to get to your Account information.  

The account settings will let you change the name associated with your Apple Music account, the nickname that shows up when you post messages and your profile picture.  You can also turn on Apple Music by tapping the "Join Apple Music" button.

Next: Choose Your Apple Music Plan

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Choose Your Apple Music Plan

After you've tapped the "Join Apple Music" button, you will be prompted on which subscription plan you want to use.  The individual plan is just for your account, while the family plan can be used by anyone in your family.

This is the important part: In order to use the Family plan, you need to link everyone's iTunes accounts in Apple's Family Sharing.  If everyone in your family is sharing the same iTunes account, the Family plan won't add anything to the Individual plan.  

You may be asked to sign into your iTunes account to verify your subscription.   If this is your first time signing up, you won't actually be billed until the free trial is over, but you will still need to verify your choice by entering your password.

Next: Choose Your Favorite Music

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Choose Your Favorite Music and Artists

After you have selected your Apple Music plan, it's time to tell Apple a little bit about your interests.  You will do this by selecting your favorite musical genres from the little red circles on the screen.  Remember, you should tap twice for your favorite music and once for music you like but don't necessarily love.  

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The next step is to do the same thing with artists.  The artists that pop up on the screen will be drawn from the genres you selected as your favorites, but you will also have the option to add new artists just in case you don't recognize many of the names.

If these steps seem familiar, they are the same as signing up for iTunes Radio.  It's just too bad that Apple didn't carry those answers over to Apple Music.

Next: Using Apple Music

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Using Apple Music

Now that you have completed the sign up process, you can begin using Apple Music. The subscription plan gives you access to thousands of songs that you can stream.  So where to get started?

Use the search button at the top-right of the screen to search for a band or song that you like but do not own.   While many artists participate in Apple Music, some don't, so if you can't find the song or band, try a different one.  

Once you locate a song, you can play it by tapping the icon next to it.  But you can do more than just play it.  If you tap the three buttons to the right of the song name, you will get a menu that lets you add the song to your current queue, add it to a play list, download it so that you can play it while offline or start a custom radio station based on the song.

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